Recruiting for a GP Surgery: Who Needs a DBS check?

Safeguarding is a key aspect of recruitment generally, but especially when recruiting for a GP surgery. DBS checks are a key aspect of safeguarding measures.

Recruiting for a GP surgery

But how can you determine who is eligible for a DBS check when recruiting for various roles in the surgery? And which level of check does each employee need?

This blog will cover the key points to consider when recruiting for a GP surgery.

Will the employee provide healthcare or personal care?

One of the most important points to consider when recruiting for a GP surgery is whether the employee be providing care. This can be either healthcare or personal care, such as assistance with washing or eating.

Any employee who will be providing care, such as a nurse, healthcare assistant or GP, will be eligible for an enhanced DBS check with a check against both the children’s and adults’ barred lists.

This is because providing care is classed as a regulated activity. If the employee provides healthcare in a general GP surgery then they would engage in regulated activity with both children and vulnerable adults, and therefore would be eligible for a check against both barred lists.

An enhanced DBS check will detail any spent or unspent convictions the applicant has, as well as any cautions, warnings or reprimands they’ve received. This level of check also provides the opportunity for the local police authority to disclose any additional information they hold about the applicant, if they deem it relevant. A barred list check will reveal whether the applicant has been barred from working with children and/or vulnerable adults.

In addition, anyone who is directly overseeing someone who’s engaging in regulated activity will be eligible for an enhanced check. For example, if the practice manager in a GP surgery is directly responsible for the management of healthcare clinicians, then they would also be eligible for an enhanced DBS check.

Will the employee have access to patients in receipt of care?

If an employee is not engaging in any form of regulated activity, consider whether they’ll have access to patients in receipt of care.

Employees who have access to patients in receipt of care in the course of their duties – for example, receptionists and administration staff – are eligible for a standard DBS check.

This level of check will detail the same criminal history information as an enhanced check, but will not give the police the ability to disclose any additional information, or allow the employer to request barred list checks as part of the application.

Will they act as a chaperone?

Another important point to consider is whether the employee will be acting as a chaperone in addition to their regular duties.

For example, if a GP receptionist also accompanied children or vulnerable adults during appointments, then they would typically be eligible for an enhanced DBS check rather than a standard check.

As such, it’s important to consider all aspects of a person’s role when determining the correct level of DBS check for them.

Recruiting for a GP surgery: In summary

If you’re recruiting for a GP surgery and have any legislative queries, you can contact the Disclosure and Barring Service for advice and guidance.

In addition, if you’re regulated by the Care Quality Commission you can also contact them for advice. It may be important to speak to them about any regulatory requirements they have relating to DBS checks.

If you’re looking to start requesting DBS checks then you can register with CRB Check Online – it’s free and takes less than five minutes!